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leahmeryl


Mar 6, 2003, 9:51 AM
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yoga to help technique?
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A really terrific climber I know has been going on and on about how yoga can really help technique (balance, body awareness, strentgh). He also suggested that I replace my weight training (3 times a week) with yoga. Any thoughts? I mean, yoga sounds like it could be relaxing, but is it worth squeezing into an already tight schedule? Also, what about the yoga classes that my gym offers - do I need to go to a yoga center or is a gym's aerobics instructor gonna be good enough? What about a DVD? Thanks!


rockwomyn


Mar 6, 2003, 9:57 AM
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Yoga is GREAT...wonderful for flexiblity and strength. i would suggest taking a class. i tried the video deal and it was much easier for me to be in front of the instructor having them walk around and give pointers. Ultimately you can take the class enough that you can learn enough postures on your own that you can do it anytime that fits your schedule. i still wish i could get up earlier every day and practice daily.....but my lazy rear end hasn't met that goal yet.

So as far as Yoga....yes, excellent choice. or even try pilates...it's like a mixture of ballet and yoga. either or are superior forms of exercise with a relatively low impact. :D


Partner missedyno


Mar 6, 2003, 3:02 PM
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sigh. this is one of my new years resolutions. that and core strength as a focus. i'm doing okay on core strength... and as for yoga, well hey it's only march, i'll get into a class later on this year


i want to try yoga not only for the climbing bonus side effects, but also for the calmness... i know i love stretching before climbing but that seems to be the only time i stretch. i'd love to take a yoga class...

rockwomyn should move to toronto and go to yoga with me. yes yes i think she should.
:)


apolobamba


Mar 6, 2003, 4:52 PM
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Yoga is great for better balance and understanding your body. When I first met my girlfriend on our first climbing date, she pulled out all these amazing moves - stems, backsteps, and foot flagging. I was stunned. She never climbed before but she was just doing what felt natural. Now since I started going to yoga, my body feels great. Most importantly, my neck feels better after being worked after looking up while belaying my hangdog friends.

I think you will get a lot out of your gym's yoga program. I think it is very helpful to have a good instructor to ensure you have the right posture in the poses. Once you have it down, incorporate it into your stretch routine and leave the class behind if you do not have time.


moabbeth


Mar 6, 2003, 6:39 PM
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Yoga is great. If your gym offers free classes you should definitely go and check one out. Also, each instructor tends to teach a different type of yoga (I like Ashtanga) so there's a lot of variety to be had in it.

It's the most exhausing relaxing workout...I know that's an oxymoron but I always leave feeling so relaxed and rejuvenated even though some of the workouts are REALLY tough.

I've found it really helps with mood, focus, flexibility...the inward focus you need for climbing is really similar to the focus you need for yoga. Really helps you learn what you're capable of doing.

But I do advise going to a class. Proper instruction is really important to get the most out of it. My ex-boyfriend bought me a tape once and I really wasn't all that enthused doing it, but when I got into a class with a good instructor and a great vibe from everyone in the room it totally changed my opinion on yoga. Instructors can help with even the slightest of adjustments that will make you realize greater potential.


bradhill


Mar 7, 2003, 11:12 AM
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Yoga is great for climbing. I tried it for flexibility but have found it also increases my effective power by strengthening core and posture muscles. This means that I can use my "climbing" muscles more effectively because of better body position and control. I wouldn't replace your weight training rouine entirely, but trading 50% of that time for yoga might make it more effective overall. The focus on breathing and being able to hold a pose is also very key for climbing.

With practically no other training but 45 min of yoga a day I upped my ice climbing by a grade this last month. It's good stuff.


otter


Mar 7, 2003, 8:39 PM
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It is relaxing on the mind...increases flexibility and at the same time gives a good toning work out to all the muscle groups. Every yoga class i have taken has been different. I am always eager to try knew ones... and as I do i find that there are certain things that work better for me. After a while you can work out a good routine specifically for you...and a good instructor could help with this. Just expect to be dang sore at first.


shastess


Mar 8, 2003, 12:54 PM
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There's a class at my gym called Body Flow which mixes YOGA, PILATES and THAI CHI, it's a great workout! We'll see if it helps my climbing.

I have been taking my class for awhile now, and it's great! At first I thought it was a little goofy and not that much of a workout, the next day when I could barely move I realized that it was. It really works your muscles deep, and my flexiblity and balance are allready improving.


novus-ordotw
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Mar 8, 2003, 1:07 PM
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when we did yoga as a warm up it really hert :evil: damn teacher


mcmlxxxiii


Mar 9, 2003, 3:27 PM
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Okay... all this talk about yoga improving your climbing skills has forced me to really try it. I went today to a four o clock class that is so very conveniently down the street. Bikram Yoga. Anyone try it?

Holy Fuck! that was the hardest thing i've ever done. Room temperature 106 degrees! I had to fight my conscience so hard to keep from running out of the room. THe lengths i'll go to to improve my climbing...man. :shock:


spider_woman


Mar 11, 2003, 7:28 AM
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Yoga is excellent! I have found that the strength and flexibility I gain from it, carries over into my climbing. I also implement breathing techniques that I learned in yoga, when I climb......it keeps me calm when I get all worked up over a move........it has helped me a lot all around, so I think its a great idea.


R. 8)


bagotricks


Mar 11, 2003, 7:28 AM
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In reply to:
Bikram Yoga. Anyone try it?

You *started* with Bikram? You are a strong, strong person.
I've been doing yoga for about 3 years now (about 1-2 per week, not consistently) and I have no desire at all to try Bikram! I get sweaty enough thankyouverymuch, no need to lock me in a sauna and make me do yoga.

If you're not completely turned off to yoga after your sweaty experience, I'd suggest trying another class- Hatha is a really good way to start.

And yep, I find that yoga just generally helps me out in life. Makes me more flexible, I have a stronger core and better posture, it calms me down and makes me happy.


alpinelynx


Mar 14, 2003, 12:13 AM
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I love yoga! I can't say enough about how great it is. flexibility, strength - especially core strength, breathing and focus. I often refer to climbing as Vertical Yoga!


watersprite


Mar 14, 2003, 5:44 PM
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Both yoga and pilates are great for climbing [In reply to]
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couple of things things to keep in mind:
Yoga can be tiring, so if you're climbing right after, you may want to leave class early - pick a time when the instructor is between exercises and leave quietly.
I have one instructor who keeps us on the floor relaxing for 15 min. after class, and I now leave before my muscles get cold.

Yoga is good for opening up the chest and helps with breathing and balance. I find I can balance on either foot at kee height without wobbling - this is new!

Pilates is very good for dev. core strength- it works the innermost stomach muscle - the transverse muscle, and it can give you the best posture. You need a careful instructor who will explain the moves -don't rely on a videotape at first. if you aren't doing the moves correctly you won't get stronger - align first, then strengthen.

great topic - thanks!!


wonderwoman


Mar 17, 2003, 6:00 AM
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Yoga helps! [In reply to]
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I pulled a tendon or ligament in my hip a few weeks back doing a stem route. I could not climb, so I needed something to keep me happy and sane so I turned to yoga class. At first I could not do many of the poses that involved putting too much stress in my hip, and the instructor was very helpful to make suggestions so I did not over do it. But I think it really helped me heal. I took two weeks off climbing, and I am close to the same level, but with a definate lack of finger strength. But I have the same flexibility, and I plan to make yoga class a permanent part of my life!

it rocks! :P


Partner missedyno


Mar 25, 2003, 8:28 AM
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i just tried yoga for the first time last night - took an ashtanga prep class.

owie! i'm sore today. but i think i loved it... i mean, one position i'd be like "okay i've got it" but then i wasn't breathing....

i think on saturday i'm going to the free intro class this place offers. it provides the opportunity to ask the instructor questions during the class....


i think i like it, and i can't wait for the better balance and all that good stuff :)


runbikeclimb


Apr 29, 2003, 12:56 PM
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All great posts... I am a Yoga instructor so you know my answer!! Pilates is also great for core strength.... one of my favorite quotes of all times linking the two:

"Yoga is a system, scientifically proven to boost your climbing ability significantly. Why do you think you always see that Guru figure sitting on the top of the mountain? You think she got there by enlightenment ?"

~Namaste~
Rebekah


Partner calamity_chk


Apr 29, 2003, 9:09 PM
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hey there,

I was practicing yoga (mostly hatha) years before I started climbing. My practice is more about the hippy feel-good stuff than about climbing, but it definitely promotes focus, flexibility and core strength. Several times when face climbing, I feel as though I'm doing yoga on the rock. Then again, I adore delicate face climbs; practicing yoga hasnt really impacted my (in)ability to effectively cram, err 'jam' my foot in a crack.

As for getting started, there are several good URLs out there ... try googling on Yoga or maybe start with the Yoga Research and Education Center. I have found tons of helpful information from their site as I explored and expanded my practice.

Also, I originally started with ali macgraw's yoga mind & body. It's a video distributed by Warner-Bros and has a nice variety of asanas - though, it does require a certain amount of strength and flexibility from the get-go.

Best of luck and let us know how it goes ..

namaste.


Partner missedyno


May 2, 2003, 11:44 AM
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ah, but what TYPE of yoga? [In reply to]
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what type of yoga is best? i took a few ashtanga classes and it was cool but kind of exhausting and hurt my joints....


then i heard from someone that ashtanga can actually harm your climbing, rather than help. should i go for hatha instead? what i would like to get out of it is increased concentration and balance


aimeerose


May 2, 2003, 12:29 PM
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I would not replace your weight training with yoga, but try to add a yoga class to your routine. Climbers need weight training to certain muscle groups (rotator cuff, wrist flexors, scapular retractors) to avoid injury. We also need flexibility, so yoga is good. Watch out for those gym classes, though. I found the Flow Yoga at our gym killed by biceps tendonitis! He made us stay in low plank position so much. It sucked. Just be careful and don't do anything that hurts.


sroehlk


May 2, 2003, 2:01 PM
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I went to my first yoga class last night. What a great way to relax! It was through the Chicago Park District and only $2 for a 1 1/2 hour lesson in Grant Park! I'm a little stiff today, but everyone warned me that would happen. I can't wait to go again next week!!!


slcathena


May 2, 2003, 2:48 PM
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i don't know if the two are related or if this is a coincidence, but shortly after starting Yoga regularly i broke out of my plateau and went from climbing V1 V2- to climbing V3, so i am an avid Yoga participant!


winter


May 2, 2003, 3:31 PM
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Yoga is awsome (I've been doing in for a couple years now), but I admit I've been lax in my practice lately. I was going once a week, and every time I climb (3-4 times a week) I do some A's and B's to stretch. I don't do Hatha, I find it boring and am not into the whole spiritual hippy mind thing (I think it's great for those who do it though). It depends what type of person you are! I do asthanga adn love it, it'm more cardio adn I think an excellent way to keep in shape. Bikram is fun but less convenient for me so I don't do it. I would though, for a change. I dont' like how it has less-no seated postures, I think those are really good for the hips..hence good fro climbing.
If you practice properly and consistantly then I think it could totally replace your weight training, have you seen how strong the devoted yogists are?! (I'm not an expert, so that could totally be false, just opinion)
I also think it it excellent for wrist and hand strength; supporting your weight in hand stand and downward dog is really hard when you are holding it for a long time. My yoga instructor is against weight training, she thinks it shortens your muscles too much. Since climbing is already doing that to my body enough, I just do yoga and running (which she also thinks is bad :wink: ).


aimeerose


May 3, 2003, 4:49 PM
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It seems like a nice idea that you can get stronger doing yoga, but you'd have to support your body weight for hours a day to get stronger if you are already in good shape. The only way to get stronger is to overload your muscles. Personally, my body weight is not enough of an overload for me to get stronger (unless I'm doing pull-ups or plyometric style push ups). Also, you're not going to train the specific muscle groups needed for injury prevention. I think yoga is great cross-training, but I would never replace my weight training with it. All my climbing improvements past 5.11 and V4 I owe to weight training and climbing.


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